2022 March Winter Emergency Shelter Extension

For Immediate Release: Thursday, March 31, 2022

Sponsored by: Housing Services Department

Washington County Extends Emergency Winter Shelter Capacity with 239 beds

Washington County is extending the Emergency Winter Shelter program into spring to provide 239 beds for families, medically fragile individuals, and adults experiencing homelessness through a combination of congregate, share space shelter settings and hotel vouchers. The Washington County Emergency Winter Shelter program is a life-saving program that provides shelter for the most vulnerable members of our community during the harsh winter months historically from November 15, 2021, to March 15, 2022. Since opening in November 2021, the program has expanded capacity from 187 beds to 239 beds. 

Washington County Supportive Housing Services program staff worked closely with service providers to expand and extend services including:  

  • Open Door HousingWorks, operating the Hillsboro winter shelter location to extend operations to April 20th, 

  •  Just Compassion, operating the Beaverton and Tigard winter shelter locations extended to May 31st and April 30th, respectively, 

  • Family Promise of Washington County and Tualatin Valley administering hotel vouchers for families extended to Aril 30th,  

  • Project Homeless Connect administering hotel vouchers extended to April 30th,  

  • Centro Cultural administering hotel vouchers extended to April 30th, 

  • Boys and Girls Aid providing shelter for youth extended to April 30th. 

Guests of the emergency winter shelter program will continue to be connected to available housing resources including housing case managers and rent assistance to move people through shelters to stable housing as quickly as possible. Extension of critical shelter services as Washington County continues to explore adding year-round shelter capacity is critical to giving shelter guests additional time to transition into permanent housing. 

Two shelter guests offered their experiences using the winter shelter system recently. 

Douglas is currently a guest of the Beaverton winter shelter location. At the shelter he has received resources around applying for disability assistance and support joining waitlists to make the transition into permanent, affordable housing with a housing voucher. He says, “We need housing for everyone.” After living unsheltered for about a year just having a safe place to sleep is “everything.”  

Douglas is already thinking about ways to pay it forward. He shares, “I volunteer at the food bank and collect extra socks for local high schools to redistribute. I want to help.” 

Another winter shelter guest was willing to share his perspective on the importance of having these shelter programs available. He explains, “I’ve been on a waiting list for an apartment with sobriety services for eight months. I just found out I am at the top of the waitlist, but I still have to wait on paperwork. I’ve seen other people here get housing quickly. Waiting is hard, but it’s almost my turn.” Without a shelter in the intermediary period, he explains, “I would just be looking for a safe place to exist.” 

Thanks to the extension of the Beaverton winter shelter program to May 31, both guests have more time to make the transition into permanent, affordable housing and can continue to work with case managers from Just Compassion, the shelter operator. 

For more information about Washington County Supportive Housing Services programs visit https://www.co.washington.or.us/Housing/SupportiveHousingServices/index.cfm. Washington County residents in need of assistance can contact 503-640-3263 or email communityconnect@caowash.org.  

Media Contact:

Emily Roots, Public Affairs Administrator
503-846-3790
Emily_Roots@co.washington.or.us